Topic: Richardsons

Aquaholics    -- Jun-26-2016 @ 7:53 PM
  Hi all..With Richardsons dominance of the broads, why don't they have a yard on the southern waters ?.

Nick & Tracy

"A boat is safe in the harbour, but this is not the purpose of a boat"

Right now I'm having amnesia and deja vu at the same time

rustic    -- Jun-26-2016 @ 8:13 PM
  Maybe it doesn't look like they could make a go of it.
Many reputable yards in the South have closed, many are struggling, why would a successful business like Richardson's take on a market that is unlikely to match the profits that the North could bring. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

When first timers ask about the Broads, we are too eager to say stay North. The South has too many strong currents, high tidal differences, etc. we have all said it.
The marketing for the South has to change, maybe market the area for those with several holidays of boating experience, experienced crew are also important. Make the South special for those with experience, it's all about unique selling features.
Now with a strong data base of customers, ie proven track record, then, just maybe Richardson's could be the one to make it happen.
Those hiring in the South would be unique, special crews, give their boats "platinum" recognition, a special burgee, special livery.
Just a thought.
Let's exploit the South, there are some great areas down there.

best regards, Richard.

Can't wait to be back on our boat on
the Broads.

DaveHR    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 7:09 AM
  We wanted to cruise the Southern Broads but, as first timers, we were strongly advised to stick with the Northern Broads.
I'd love to visit the south part but unless we were passengers/crew on a boat captained by an experienced Broads user we would not.
I can see why boatyards are nervous about opening yards on the Southern Broads and agree entirely with what has been said by Rustic.

If you cannot say anything nice, best not to say anything.

This message was edited by DaveHR on Jun-27-16 @ 8:10 AM

Captain    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 1:00 PM

I am bit of an anorak when it comes to boat bookings, to the extent that I monitor the bookings of certain yards using website availabilty charts (sad I know). Looking at Swancrafts boats last year they had average bookings of approx 24.5 weeks at the season end for the eleven boats, a very good figure for the southern rivers. Those same boats from Stalham/Acle are showing 29.2 weeks so far possibly the best booking figures I have seen in recent years, only Royalls of Wroxham have come close. So unfortunately they don't need to run from the South, its cheaper and more popular to run from a large yard in the North. Sadly I love the peace and quiet of the South and are now running out of yards and boats to hire from!


djbsom    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 2:31 PM
Hi Dave,
I wouldn't worry too much about going 'down south'. They really are peaceful and serene expanses. We've also been advised to stay north of yarmouth but they were mostly concerned about breakdown cover as it was out of season. As far as the transit through yarmouth goes, it's not as bad as some will make out.
So long as you arrive roughly around low tide (or preferably soon after) you'll have an easy trip. Allow an hour or so to get to the top of Breydon and the southern broads are there to enjoy.


DaveHR    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 5:05 PM
  It's also the rise and fall of the tide we were worried about.
I could see us mooring somewhere, going to a local pub, getting back to the boat and finding it two feet higher than when we left.
Our mobility issues would mean sitting on the bank, waiting for the tide to ebb before being able to get back on board.

If you cannot say anything nice, best not to say anything.

uitmis    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 6:35 PM
  It's really not that bad.  I find people tend to exaggerate when they mention the South.  I've never had a problem and neither has anyone else I know.

DaveHR    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 6:55 PM
  Thanks both for your helpful replies.
I'll look at the southern Broads in greater detail for next year.
Thank you

If you cannot say anything nice, best not to say anything.

djbsom    -- Jun-27-2016 @ 9:04 PM
  One highlight of any of our broads trips is a carvery at the Wherry hotel on Oulton broad. It's a quiet journey down from breydon and a lovely meal with a view from the hotel. We then usually take the 20 mins trip around the corner for a quiet night.
Can't wait for October.


Dreamer    -- Jun-28-2016 @ 2:53 PM
  Please stop trying to 'sell' the southern broads, they are fantastic now with two yards less! ( I know I am being hopelessly selfish.) Crossing Breydon south to north yesterday, the number of boats travelling south looked like an armada coming towards us! Two weeks spent south and getting moorings wherever we wanted them was bliss. Having said that, the north really doesn't seem too busy this week.

avg45    -- Jun-28-2016 @ 6:06 PM
  I don't know what all the fuss is about. The first boat I hired was Commander 1 From Brooms Brundall, the second was Cruiseliner 6 from Brooms. On both occasions we travelled down river to Reedham, crossed Breydon through Yarmouth without any problems and carried on up to the northern rivers. We had a great time and had no problems with negotiating the  bridges at Yarmouth on our return or wherever we travelled once we got back to the southern rivers.  We had no problem with the difference in tide as when we were at Yarmouth Yacht station the staff there explained what springs were.  all in all it seemed as though boating on the Broads was mainly common sense, reading the captains manual or listening to and taking good advice. Happy holiday's to you  whether on the north or southern broads.    LOL   Cheers

I read somewhere that
drinking was
bad for you, so I have
given up Reading.

norfolkgirl    -- Jul-3-2016 @ 4:53 PM
  the southern broads atr just as lovely as thye north, goinf#g throught yarmoth is not hatf it you folloe the recommendadtions and gp yhtough at slack water

JackTB    -- Jul-7-2016 @ 8:38 AM
  The Southern Broads are not as daunting as has been said. Make sure you have a tide table for the week or two that you are there. Plan where to go and work out how long you can spend there before the tide is next slack. Breydon water is no problem if you check at Yarmouth Yacht Station to find out when slack water is as an hour either side of slack you can cruise calmly and safely across it. Planning your cruise time with the tide saves a lot of fuel.  

Jack TB

grandpamike    -- Jul-20-2016 @ 12:49 PM
  You could save even more fuel if you sailed, but that would require at least one fairly able-bodied crew member  Smile

Grandpa Mike

FreemanBattyBat    -- Jul-20-2016 @ 10:03 PM
  Re the tide tables, at the bottom of this and every page are heading in red. just pick TIDE TABLES, look for your cruising area.
It even tells you the best time to cross Breydon. You can  chose the period you need, altogether excellent.

Freeman F23 moored near

Exile    -- Jul-20-2016 @ 10:05 PM
  I would describe the south as merely a "touch" more challenging than the north.
Apart from Breydon on a bad day (when you can simply not venture on to it) and sussing which way to moor in relation to the tide it is pretty much the same.

The biggest difference is the landscape. It is generally bleaker, more windswept and isolated in feel. Beautiful none the less.

mamadi    -- Oct-16-2016 @ 7:06 AM
  I have hired from both Sotheby's and north. One of the major problems I had was getting water. I remember putting a post on here asking if anyone had any ideas where to fill up.
The south as Beccles , which is one of my favorites. But North as more to offer, but less morning places x

Many thanks

Siobhan    -- Dec-29-2016 @ 12:08 AM
  Now that's a great paradigm and a great question within it.

They are definitely the best deals for hire boats and (I'm not a PhD in Business Studies and Corporate Interests etc.) … but they seem to have 'Horizon' on their horizons, which, er, have? (Had?) a hire boat yard at Acle Bridge - called Horizon Craft.

Now, I know that Acle is not, as you put it, "on the southern waters", but it might just as well be. I mean, not only is it merely a couple of hours' cruise from Bure mouth (and hence, Breydon) on a good ebb, but Acle Bridge is about as centrally located as it is possible to be in the network.

So, even better!

And yet … I heard that (OH!! SOB!! No! Please!!) that Horizon Craft at Acle Bridge are - be sitting down please - planning to move to … Yes, you guessed … no better than of all places: Stalham!

Now, in the light of your excellent suggestion, doesn't that strike you as at the very least, counterintuitive!?? (And from both a navigator's and motorist's position?)

Hundreds-more* still … craft cramming their way up and down the lovely little River Ant and not to mention the tedious business of being at the helm of a vessel, irrevocably condemned to aid, abet, counsel and procure the skipper to contribute to the madness. Not to mention having to endure it at BOTH ends of an otherwise well-planned break.

Ugh. Not only NOT a yard on the Southern Broads, but the closest to it moving WAY, way upstream on a tiny river to the northward.

Corporate calamity even unto the Broads.

Please, somebody, tell me my sources are all wrong!!!!

I do hope I am so wrong!


* Oh - positively thousands of the things!! Wink

This message was edited by Siobhan on Dec-29-16 @ 12:23 AM

DorsetHelmsman    -- Dec-29-2016 @ 9:12 AM
  Well here is one point put to bed (from last week please keep up hehe)

ChrisHGB    -- Dec-29-2016 @ 2:14 PM
  It is called " The Economies of Scale " Totally agree far too many hire boats at the top of the Ant given that many will be helmed by first timers.
But then you know if you can drive a car etc, etc,


I have swallowed the anchor but
have not tried mud weight yet!

DaveHR    -- Dec-29-2016 @ 3:24 PM
  If I were to going skiing, as a novice, I would keep to the nursery slopes. The more advanced skiers may well want to use the advanced slopes and slaloms.
Change skis to boats and turn snow into water. This is why I keep to the northern Broads - lack of ability and confidence.

Exile    -- Dec-29-2016 @ 10:53 PM
  "lack of ability and confidence."

Both of those reasons are remedied with practice. None of us are too old to get that.

On a more general point...
I would point out that not everyone that "loves" the north will also feel the same about the south. The bleaker landscape, distances between facilities and general feel of the area are very different. In my view it is a very different experience.
I am sure that the reverse is also true for some.

Personally I like the more open landscape for an occasional change to the "prettiness" in the North, or my preferred area above Potter.
I merely point this out as I have twice relatively recently been told by hirers that they were disappointed that their trips south were not "as good" as their usual northern trips.
Probably simply not to their personal taste. Which I guess is fair enough as we are all entitled to our opinion.
Others will no doubt love the area and the only way to find out is to visit.

mamadi    -- Jan-2-2017 @ 2:26 PM
  I've booked from both south and north. Unfortunately North as more facilities, I remember posting on here as we were struggling to fill up with water whilst on the south.
Beccles is one if my favorites and I'm hoping to reach there in October....
North is congested I totally agree and with less moorings.

Many thanks

newson    -- Jan-3-2017 @ 12:02 PM
  Richardsons used to own Hearts at Thorpe and I had many years happy cruising with them.I never had a problem with cruising on the southern broads,just read all the information in the brochures and guide books.

grutter    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 12:22 PM
  I have been going to the Broads for almost 20 years now. Since 2001, we have used Summercraft and never been disappointed by their service or quality. However, I've always taken an interest in other boat hire companies and it's depressing that Richardson's now seem to completely dominate. We have just returned from a week's holiday today and I would say 4/5 hire boats we saw were owned by Richardson's. Not only that, but the vast majority of their boats that I see look poorly maintained, dirty and in need of serious investment. I know they are amongst the cheapest to hire from, but that's no excuse for hiring out boats that look (and sound) ready for the scrapyard? Some of those boats must be 40+ years old now?

Luise    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 2:18 PM
  “depressing that Richardson's now seem to completely dominate… I would say 4/5 hire boats we saw were owned by Richardson's”

Dummies Guide to Capitalist Economics: we begin with a free market whereby consumers benefit from a choice of product and price. Economies of scale force smaller competitors out of business and a cartel of the “big boys” rules the roost for a while. This is unstable, and the obvious and inevitable consequence of unchecked competition is a monopoly. Goodbye choice of product and price.

I must dig out my “Never Play Monopoly With Marx” T-shirt.


Dreamer    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 3:05 PM
  What is wrong with boats that are 40+ years old??

spiderman    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 3:35 PM
  Absolutely nothing but a wash once in a while wouldn't hurt;-)

garryn    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 4:35 PM
  I had a walk round Richardson's yard this afternoon and was thinking to myself how well  the boats looked after a full  season in hire.


KenEldridge    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 5:24 PM
  Could not agree more with the last post. Richardsons cater for the many not the few, and the wear and tear on the boats through the season reflects how they look in October due to their popularity

Some other yards boats were looking shabby in April / May when Richardsons looked immaculate. A well maintained fleet also.

steve    -- Oct-28-2017 @ 5:57 PM
  To be fair , the three largest fleet operator boats did'nt look to clever this week , end of the season , had there use , busy time for them now , as they start the winter maintenance programme on the fleets , I noticed that Herbert woods have started slightly earlier this year with there programme,

steve and vicky
( apparently a moaner)

uitmis    -- Nov-30-2018 @ 4:48 PM
  Well done to Richardsons on winning more awards.

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